Since 2002, Deborah Cole Thomas has struggled with osteoarthritis in her feet and ankles. As a result of her condition, the 60 year old needed multiple surgeries and requires pain medication on a constant basis.
Fortunately, The University of Pittsburgh is conducting research to aid patients like Thomas. Rocky S. Tuan, a cellular and molecular engineering expert, leads a team use 3D printers to make replacement joints out of stem cells and scaffolding material. According to research, the artificial joints just might be more effective than the metal and plastic joints currently being used.
The Elderly and their Feet
As we age we start to notice many changes in our body, but the elder population may not notice them right away. Medical conditions may prevent the elderly to take notice of their foot health right away. Poor vision is a lead contributor to not taking action for the elderly.
Neuropathy – can reduce feeling in the feet, and can hide many life threating medical conditions.
Reduced flexibility – prevents the ability of proper toenail trimming, and foot cleaning. If left untreated, it may lead to further medical issues.
Foot sores – amongst the older population can be serious before they are discovered. Some of the problematic conditions they may face are:
- Gouging toenails affecting nearby toe
- Shoes that don’t fit properly
- Pressure sores
- Loss of circulation in legs & feet
- Edema & swelling of feet and ankles
- Injuries left unnoticed
- Insect or pet bites can also become inflamed and infected
- Stepping on sharp objects, without notice can increase pain
Diabetes and poor circulation can cause general loss of sensitivity over the years, turning a simple cut into a serious issue.
Bacteria- feet which are exposed to floors that have moist environments like pools and spas are prone to bacteria. These areas can contribute to foot funguses and other diseases.
For more information about the Elderly and their Feet, read the following article.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Metairie and New Orleans, LA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot ankle injuries.
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